Kia is reportedly considering an expansion of its incoming pick-up’s platform by introducing a body-on-frame SUV aimed at the Toyota Fortuner, Ford Everest, Isuzu MU-X and the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport.
While the Korean marque’s interpretation of sister brand Hyundai’s first double cab is currently under development and only due for release in 2022 or 2023, Kia Australia CEO, Damien Meredith, has indicated that the brand’s SUV line-up still has space for more models.
“I think we need more. I think we need probably one or two bigger ones, to be quite honest. That would help us dramatically,” carsguide.com.au quoted Meredith as saying.
In a similar reaction, Kia Australia Product Manager, Roland Rivera told the online publication that the muted model could sit above the Sorento in the brand’s product portfolio Down Under as no plans are currently in place to make the flagship, and runaway sales-hit, Tellurdie (pictured) available with right-hand-drive.
“Out of Georgia, Telluride is still left-hand drive. We’ll review, it’s always under constant review. There’s definitely room above Sorento, or even beside a Sorento in a ladder-frame form. We’d like to think that if there was development for a commercial range, then it would have the ability to be not just one particular type of body on top,” Rivera said.
Despite the SUV rumours, the automaker has once again shrugged-off speculation that the yet-as-unnamed pick-up will be offered Down Under, with its General Manager of Media and Corporate Communications, Kevin Hepworth, saying that it has “no comment to make on that issue whatsoever”.
“We’re not commenting at all. As soon as anything is available, we will let you know for sure, but there is no need for comment on something that doesn’t exist at this stage,” he said.
In contrast to its sister brand’s developing of two models, seemingly only one Kia pick-up will be produced and based on the mentioned rumours, feature a ladder-frame chassis as opposed to the unibody Hyundai Santa Cruz that will be unveiled next year for North America only.